Hermetic windows

If you wanted to create a magical window to go into an underground lab, what would be the best way to do it.

I'm thinking either ReIm to change the location of the image, or Cr(In)Im to perceive a distant image and reproduce it. Both of course would require an arcane connection and both would work best (and be most aesthetically pleasing) if they displayed their image in a nicely made window frame.

But which would work best. ReIm has the advantage of being a single effect, so with a good lab total one could create it as a lesser enchanted item or cast it as a spell. Could you do the Cr(In)Im effect as a single effect too?

So the ReIm version is base 15, +4 for arcane connection. If you wanted it as a spell, you'd need to give it a duration, sun or moon both seem best. So its level 45 or 50 as a spell. Which puts it firmly in the range of specialists only.
If you want to put it into an item you can make it permanent for a total level of 49.

Doing it the Cr(Re)Im route is lower level and if we assume that it can be done in one effect then it works out as
Base 1, +2 for a moving image, +1 for an elaborate image, +4 arcane connection, +1 for the intellego req. Add sun or moon duration and its level 35/40. Much easier than the rego version.

Are my maths and understanding of the arts correct here? Is there a way to do it at lower level?

How far underground is your lab? There is a level 4 guideline "Make an object appear (to one sense) to be up to fifteen paces from its actual position."

You use this (+2 sun +1 level 2x's per day and +3 levels environmental trigger) to create an item at level 14. You set the enchanted device outside and it projects the image to your underground lab.

Is there some reason you need to get an image from a distant AC? Don't get me wrong, there are obviously a lot more useful things that can be done with a window that scrys on a distant object regardless of where that object is than a window that just moves an image 45 feet or so.

Perhaps making an object appear in a different location doesn't justify transmitting an image?

I think that it would be ok to build it off of the level 1 intellego Imaginem guideline use one sense at a distance.

base 1, + 4 Arcane connection, +2 sun, +4 levels constant for a total level of 19.

Wait, that won't work. There is the weirdness of target for the vison spells summoning the distant image uses target room. To See as Through a Plethron distant from magi of Hermes p101. solves this by using a special target equivalent to room +1 for what could be seen from a location. This should really be the last word on that target.

Can you make a chain that extends from the surface to your lab as part of the device? If so you could get by with range personal and do it as a lesser enchantment.
base 1, +2 sun, +3 special target, +4 levels constant... total level 14

That way you could justify range personal

I'm a little confused by the OP. Do you only want to be able to look outward, essentially half the use of the window in my mind? Or do you also want to let light in, light and maybe air being the other in my mind? I wanted both for a covenant I designed. To get both you can't just use Imaginem, as you'd need Ignem for the light (ignoring the air bit). I took at different approach for the covenant I designed. MuTe with T: Part to change properties of the rock. Of course, in my case with a cliffside there isn't lots of rock to get through until the open air, at least for the rooms with the big windows.

Alas the lab is nine stories underground.

I was thinking of just images, I can get light and air from other spells ans trying to get those from the same device make it rather potent.

Truthfully I think this might be beyond my character who isn't imagine focused. Maybe something to file away for later, but I do like the idea of having three or four big windows with different views in the lab.

Intelligo Imaginem, much like Summoning the Distant Image. You are essentially scrying on a location, with the Code implications therein, although a simple static image of a scene seems unintrusive. (The difference between looking out a mundane window and a magical one is ...?)

You could still use a very long chain and get it done as a level 14 lesser enchanted device.

As most buildings in this time and age don't really have any proper windows why not just buy some nice big tapestries. I bet you could commission some really nice peaces, maybe depict some of the big deeds your magi have done previously? Also the tapestry will help with the echoing in the lab. Or you could commission a nice big painting.

Just think of all the things your magi could be doing instead of wasting time on making a magical window. :wink:

Yea, like enchanting a magical tapestry :smiley:

Come to think of it, Hermetic magi have exactly the abilities and resources to create modern, flat pane glass windows. A moderately strong Creo Ignem spell can create molten metal, and magi can create and/or conjure enough steel to contain it in a shallow, flat basin. All you need to do is pour the molten glass over that metal and you have a window or mirror. The real question is how a magi would come up with the idea in the first place...

I don't know much about the development of glass, but I found this on Wikipedia:

Based on that, I would say sheet glass is known.

Honestly, though, if you want to use Hermetic magic to make sheet glass, why not just use ReTe to make it instead of going through all that CrIg and pouring out process.

Ultimately questions such as this are best answered with knowledge of the magus' Arts and relevant Virtues (e.g. Magical Focus).
If operating with Imaginem, and let me state it's not by any means the only viable option, one has to take care that Hermetic magic handles images as "images of discrete objects" instead of "camera views/scenes". So, in general it's tricky to reproduce a "window view", because it's made by a large number of objects, that might in fact be quite far away from the window itself.

There's a workaround. Have a mirror installed above ground where your "virtual window" would look from; and transport the image of that mirror. More precisely, attach the image of that mirror to a window frame (this is the same Base 4 effect as "The captive voice"), which you then move to your underground laboratory - while you place the mirror above ground, invisible. An effective way to cast the spell if you are willing to go for a circular window, hobbit-style, is R:Touch, D:Ring, T:Circle for a final level equal to 15.

This is easily within the reach of spontaneous magic even for the non-specialist with a little experience in Rego and/or Imaginem: say, a magus with Rego 9, Imaginem 5, Stamina +2, casting cerimonially with +2 Artes Liberales and +2 Philosophiae (including appropriate specialties), with +3 casting props, with Booming Voice and Exaggerated Gestures for a bonus of +2, in a +3 magic Aura, who avoids rolling a 0 on a stress die. In my saga the Rego specialist PC, who (already) knows as a formulaic spell the phenomenally useful D:Ring version of Maintain the Demanding spell, would actually cast the ReIm effect with non-fatiguing spontaneous magic at Level 10 and with D:Conc, sustaining it with the aforementioned formulaic (which must be at Level 15+).

You can use as a base Vision of Heat's Light with an extra CrIm requisit (+10 level): you create an illusion of a fire that casts lights and image as the fire from which you have a AC. Place the real fire where you want and anything that is lighten by it will be cast by the other fire. But it become a very high level spell (45), so definetily not a suitable alternative for a beginning character.

If the purpose is only to imitate a window (to make the underground sanctum less gloomy), then you could invent a spell that kind of recreate the view from a location without being a "CCTV" transmission. It significantly lower the base level and avoid any issue about scrying upon sodales.
CrIm 20 (base 3 (to have sight, smell and touch so you can feel the breeze and smell flowers), Touch (+1), Duration Sun (+2), Move (in a natural, random way) (+1), +1 for intricacy) - Gaze through the phantasmal window: recreate a view from a place the mage as a memory. The image keeps evolving as naturally as possible, without any drastic changes.

A more specialised mage could invent a version with Arcane range (CrIm35), which will allow him to cast an image of location he has an AC.

Because none of these two spells uses Intellego, they do not allow to have a real view on what is currently happening, they are only image of a place as it is on "average". It does not allow to scry in the past, observe specific elements or hear distinctive sounds. No risk of infringement with the Code.

To prove that mundanes can do it, and eventually fob off that responsibility on our grogs. Because we're a busy magus and we want to DO something with these windows, after all. Plus, why not let everyone have windows?

Is on of those grog's named William of the Gate? Do his Flaws include a problem with eunuchs and/or Clan MacOwess?

I'm liking the idea of not having windows that are remote scrying portals, but instead just have illusions that display something nice, like a forest view, an ocean view, etc. Much easier and does what the character wants. I can also throw some CrIg in there to make them light sources too.

The False Window from HoH:S page 68 looks good except that its resisted by the Parma...

That spell creates a stream of iconic species. In this situation the magus would be much better served by just creating an image which will naturally generate non magical species. Creo imaginem base 1 "Create an image that affects a single sense" is the tool to use (in my opinion).

The problem tackled by The False Window is, that the wall it is created on would block the species of that Creo Imaginem base 1 spell of an image behind it.

As geometrical perspective like this

is not yet available to the magus from Mythic Europe, he cannot just CrIm an image of the window, with correct perspective of what is behind it, on the wall - or can he? Certainly it would be pretty complex 'magical engineering' around concepts still unavailable.


Right, but as Jason72 pointed out, the problem that The false Window creates is that it generates magical species that are blocked by parma. I thought that an image that could be seen without dropping one's MR would be preferable. But now I'm thinking that The False window coupled with a mirror might be cool as long as we're going overboard on the whole project (although I still like As through a Plethron Distant as a an enchanted device).

The magical species hit the mirror which then generates a non-magical "reflection". Or would you rule that the species actually are redirected?

The identity of species is a subject for Imaginem scholars or your troupe: I will not touch it even with tongs.

But consider other HoH:S p.68 Miniature Examples like An Enemy Awash in the Pure Sigil of the Magus: would you allow them to work and bypass Magic Resistance when aimed through a mirror? Wouldn't this be pretty cheap?